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Honoring Professor Sandra Morgen

Sandra Lynn Morgen died on September 27, 2016 of ovarian cancer.

She was born on March 31, 1950 to Dr. Robert O. Morgen and Sadye Block Morgen in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent the most of her childhood in Montreal, Canada and Houston, Texas.

Sandi inhabited her life passionately, and—during her life with cancer—with exquisite purpose: to live lovingly, generously, and with courage. A prominent cultural anthropologist at the University of Oregon, Sandi was the devoted mother of Seth Morgen Long (Portland) and Sarah Morgen Long (New York City) with her husband, poet and photographer Robert Hill Long. She is also survived by her sisters Barbara Morgen (Scarsdale. New York) and Betsy Glen (Austin, Texas), and by her brother Richard Morgen (Denver, Colorado), and several adored nieces and nephews, including Deborah Hemel, Daniel Hemel, Alex Glen, Shannon Glen and Erin Glen, and by her aunt Marilyn Block.

Sandi loved to walk, talk, and dance. She adored the natural world. Beaches and oceans were places of peaceful refuge, especially Yachats and Kaua’i. Sandi was a gifted writer of poetry and prose. She cultivated friendships like flowers; she leaves behind circles of love and attachment that ripple over great time and distance.

Sandi was educated at the University of Texas (B.A. 1972) and at the University of North Carolina (Ph.D. 1982). During her career, she was affiliated with Duke, UNC, the University of Massachusetts, Penn State and, from 1991-2016, the University of Oregon, where she was Professor of Anthropology, Director of the Center for the Study of Women in Society, Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Associate Dean of the Graduate School.

A pioneer in feminist anthropology and the anthropology of North America, Sandi wrote widely about health, social welfare, and tax policy. Her recent books include Stretched Thin: Poor Families, Welfare Work and Welfare Reform (2010); Taxes are a Woman’s Issue (2006); and Into Our Own Hands: The Women’s Health Movement in the U.S. 1969-1990, winner of the Basker Prize from the Society for Medical Anthropology, 2004.

Her many professional awards include the Career Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Anthropology of the U.S. from the Society for the Anthropology of North America, the Research Faculty Excellence Award at the University of Oregon, the Squeaky Wheel award from the Committee on the Status of Women in Anthropology and the Committee on Gender Equity in Anthropology of the American Anthropological Association, and the Martin Luther King and Charles Johnson awards from the University of Oregon. She was a president of the Society for the Anthropology of North America, president of the Association for Feminist Anthropology, and a member of the American Anthropological Association’s Commission on Race and Racism.